Obesity is a disease; people need help to overcome it: Safefood

Health experts are calling for obesity to be recognised as a disease instead of something people can be blamed for.

Safefood says the stigma surrounding weight means that the two thirds of adults and one quarter of children who are obese, are not getting the help they need.

The organisation wants the language surrounding the issue to become more positive, in the same way that we've changed from talking about 'mental illness' to 'mental health'.

Dr Marian O'Reilly from Safefood said it can be difficult for people to lose weight on their own. She said public policy can help, including in health and education.

She used the example of vending machines, which she said should have healthy options available.

"Healthy foods (should be) made more available - wherever we go, the healthier choice should be the easier choice," she said.

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